I am not quite happy of the DOLE plan to close 2 Philippine Overseas Labor Offices. A country where there are 500 to 1000 OFWs warrants Government services that includes overseeing the plight of our working Filipinos overseas. Non-performance in terms of their response to the calls of the distressed OFWs should not be considered as the whole function of POLO.
Though I agree that here in the Kingdom, there are Labor Offices whose personnel and Welfare Officers are not doing their job well. DOLE should evaluate and assess individual non-performing POLO officers or Welfare Officers and be sent back home in earliest flight possible.
In Saudi Arabia, an additional case officers and interpreters are badly needed as well as transportation facilities which is very necessary in order to provide excellent services for our OFWs in distress.
In another developments, DOLE announced 815,000 high-end jobs to be available to OFWs. According to my friend Labor Undersecretary Arturo Sodusta, most of the expected jobs are in the telecommunications, medical and construction industries, which will require engineers, pipe fitters, welders, painters, electricians, and surveyors.
Usec Arturo Sodusta was once posted as Labor Attache in Saudi Arabia and currently holds the position as DOLE Undersecretary for Workers Welfare and Protection. Prior to his present appointment he was then the Labor Attache in the United States.
He was the only assigned Labor Attache in the Kingdom I knew where he performed his job through constant dialogues or by diplomatic means. In handling labor cases, he traveled hundred kilometers away from the city proper particularly in the industrial areas-Riyadh just to visit the management of the companies and convinced both parties to come up a better solution rather than putting the complainant OFWs job at risk.
He truly deserves the title Undersecretary for Welfare and Protection in the government service – More Power Sir!